I really love watching Tessa and Scott skate and with the (probable) end of their skating career (I’m okay with it now; I was never okay with after Sochi but I can deal with it now), I want to take some time to look back over their career and some of my favourite moments, programs, costumes, you name it. So in the next few installments I’m going to geek out here a little bit and then I’ll go back to being a relatively normal skating fan… if there is such a thing.
The Top Ten Dresses of Tessa and Suits of Scott
Let’s just start with saying that Tessa has had a LOT of dresses over the years and not just because of her long competitive career. Only infrequently has she worn one dress for a program throughout a season. Sometimes she has kept it to two dresses in a season for a particular program, but it has gone as a high as six. Scott tends to have fewer, but he switches it up to from time to time. As a viewer, I really appreciate that they like to keep things fresh and interesting. I also appreciate that they don’t quit until they achieve just the effect and feel they are looking for, although a lot of changes can also be pretty good signal that they aren’t comfortable or haven’t really found their voice yet. Nonetheless, it means that we have gotten to see lots of beautiful skating dresses in particular over the years; and, in another achievement, nothing tacky or over-the-top (i.e., tatters and shreds, large crosses or other cues emblazoned on their outfits, gaudy colours, questionable bling, etc., with a few slightly silly early exceptions and the caveat that Latin is Latin and you can’t change that). Their look is simple and tasteful, accentuating their lines and emphasizing beauty.
Just a note about this list – There are quite a few outfits that I really like that I left off this list because although beautiful, they didn’t seem just quite right for the dance. I loved the simple white, shimmering Tessa wore at the 2010 Olympics but for some reason it has always felt like a bit of a mismatch with music; I loved the nude tulle dress she also wore for that program and it was the right style but wrong colour; I love her blue dress for Umbrellas of Cherbourg but she and Scott never really seemed to matched; I also loved Tessa’s original Carmen dress but I think she was wide to switch it for something more modern and more suited to the dance’s aesthetic.
And let’s not forget about Scott. I love Scott’s masculine presence on the ice which I think is completely unrivaled and he can certainly cut a dashing figure. Some of my favourites for him and her come for the same programs, but not always. So, in the end, this is what I came up with, in no particular order except chronological:
Tessa 1: Argentine Tango CD (Worlds 2008) – Tessa and Scott really made a splash at 2008 Worlds. I feel that Tessa really started off well with this tango dress in the cumpulsories. It’s both simple and dramatic, which is what the tango calls for, I think.
I didn’t realize until just now that those are buttons (undone) going all the way down the front. Nice detail.
Scott 1: Dark Eyes OD (2007-08) – I find I prefer Scott wearing something other than just a shirt and pants. I like when he fancies it up a bit and this is nice and fancy in a masculine way, but they haven’t gone crazy. They’be kept it under control and done just enough to create the character and feel of the program. I think her outfit also captures the character but I think his looks is better in an objective way. He gets some nice details on the vest too.
Scott 2: Tango Romantica CD (2009-10) – The Tango Romantica was one the compulsory dances during this season and Tessa and Scott performed it at a few competitions. Tessa’s dress changed but Scott’s look remained the same throughout and this is one of the times just a shirt and pants makes the list. Although he’s all in black, this shirt has some romance in its beautiful detail. Well done!
Tessa 2/Scott 3: Farrucas OD (2010) – This program took a couple tries to get it right but the final dress is gorgeous. It is such a perfect fit for the dance with the flaming red skirt and beautiful lace bodice, it just makes the dance. The way the skirt moved was gorgeous. I like that for him they are doing something a little different but still on point. The man can wear ruffles.
Tessa 3/Scott 4: Tango-Golden Waltz SD (2011) – I love the the drop waist and the back. This is another one that just seemed to work so for the program; no need to revise. Look at the detail! (Tessa generally does a 1920s/30s look really well. The Charleston program of 08-09 never worked but she still looked good.) But who I really want to talk about here is Scott. This is working well for him, the vest and tie, the blue and yellow. I think this is maybe the only time he wore a neck tie but looking at it now, I don’t understand why. I love how he manages to look formal yet informal all at the same time.
They must have been dancing in hold a lot during this program because it is hard to find a plain photo of the front of Tessa’s dress. Here is the best I can do:
Tessa 4/Scott 5: Latin Rhumba FD #1 (4CC/Worlds 2012) – Scott just looks so good. There is nothing else to say. The black form fitting Latin style really works for him. He wore it the previous season and he did all over again in this one. I’m glad they realized there was no need to change. And this dress makes me so happy every time I see it. She also looks like she is having a great time in it! I appreciate the ruffles which are a bit of a departure for Tessa when it comes to Latin and despite its busyness, it doesn’t feel like too much to me. It feels playful and flirtatious and exuberant all rolled into one.
Note: I should add that Scott did deviate from his winning combination once, at Nationals, but it’s one of the those things you want to forget, so I expunged it from my memory until now. But they must have realized it was a misstep because he returned to his outfit for the rest of season. So many things to be thankful for!
Tessa 5/Scott 6: “The Waltz Went On” Polka SD (2012-13) – This dress is so lovely and whimsical, it really made me so sad when she switched it for a black dress for Worlds. It’s such a lovely, vibrant colour, and with lovely detail. I love the delicacy of the bodice. (Okay, I have some reservations about the feather – maybe for the hair instead?) I don’t understand, Tessa! Scott however, did not disappoint me and change his outfit. He kept to this simple yet effective jacket. I like that it’s slightly military and creates a period feel without being specific or ornate; and, it contrasts nicely with Tessa’s dress. I just like looking at it. Brass buttons and velvet are really a thing.
A bit of a rant: Now that I’m looking at the black dress again, I stand by my opinion. It just doesn’t feel right – too dark and I’m not sure about strapless? (Strapless for a polka seems a dangerous combination.) At the very least, I do not feel it is an improvement over the first. I probably would have been okay if it were in a different colour, but black is the colour of widows and femme fatales, not the right colour at all. I blame it entirely for the issues Tessa and Scott had with that short dance at Worlds (although the ruffles are nice…) But I don’t think you should wear the same colour for both programs in a season, right?
Scott 7: Carmen FD (2012-13) – Scott has done a few tops involving sheers but I think this is my favourite look. Yes, it’s all black (what? he looks good!) but it really suits the modern aesthetic of the program: a little asymmetric and angular, pared down and spare, but still interesting and masculine.
Tessa 6/Scott 8: Cheek-to-Cheek Finn Step SD (2013-14) – Suspenders! I love suspenders! Now that I look back, I’m surprised he didn’t wear them before. Both Tessa and Scott’s outfits are spot on and they look amazing. Tessa had a few nice dresses for this dance but I think my favourite it still the first one. It was just such a classy little black dress and perfect for the music. The skirt is so swishy, plus I do like the sequins and this has quite a lot! I’m just not quite sure if I like the grey or white shirt best for Scott…
Can I just add that this dress is a very close second to the one above. It wins for the art deco detail but I like the back and skirt better on the first, so it wins overall.
Scott 9: Seasons FD (2013 Skate Canada/GPF) – I didn’t realize at first that these pants were high-waisted but then I did and it made all the difference. (I’ve been debating if is that is just how he wears his pants or whether it’s on purpose and I am coming down firmly on the side of on purpose.) The colour of the shirt is very nice too but really, I’m just all about the pants. They make this shirts and pant combo a little different. You maybe need to watch the skate to fully appreciate but they are very flattering. I think this is the only time Scott wore plushy pants too. And why not?
Okay, so it feels a little awkward to be talking about Scott’s pants so much. This isn’t just about him being hot (although it is a little bit). But he can wear them. I wish I could.
Tessa 7: Seasons FD (Olympic Team Event 2014) – I should say that I never felt like Scott and Tessa’s outfits for this program really hit the mark. I always thought they should be going for something more contemporary and casual, as if they were portraying themselves on ice. However, this dress wins for just being flat out beautiful. I love that she is all wrapped up like a Faberge egg. The detail is exquisite. I also think that a richer, deeper colour is the right call for this program, rather than the pale, pastel shades of the other dresses she wore (see above). This was a dance with more power than Mahler. The skirt moved gloriously on the ice too.
Tessa 8: Journey FD (2016) – For this program, Tessa wore two dresses, one grey and one pink, which at first I thought were exactly the same except for the colour but now I realize that they differed in several subtle ways. I like them both and now I’m trying to weigh which on balance I prefer. The pink is a lovely shade and really suits Tessa, but I think the grey suits the program more, a little more melancholy and subdued. I love the pattern created with the strips of material on both but the straps, back, waist and bodice all differ between them. I prefer the back on the pink but I don’t like the open triangles under the boobs; I think I prefer the front on the grey. I like the straps equally. … I guess I will just call it a draw. Overall, whichever dress, she had a very modern look with interesting, unique visual detail, and nary a sequin in sight. That doesn’t happen very often these days.
Tessa 9/Scott 10: Latin Rhumba SD #2 (Olympic Team Event 2018) – This dress was just stunning. I was sorry we didn’t get to see it a second time. I love the bold gold bands, and she just looks so smooth in it. I even like asymmetry and that does not happen very often. Look how their crystals match! I really pleased with Scott in this look and not just because of the deep V his shirt, but also because he’s not just letting her do all the work. He’s bringing the Latin too. And, he looks good in those sparkles. He wore it well all season, whether in the black or silvery-grey.
Tessa 10: Moulin Rouge FD (2017-18) – Tessa’s dress for Moulin Rougue, which she wore first at Skate Canada, was just… perfect. She looked (again) so smooth and sophisticated; the deep, rich colour was dramatic and passionate; and, the dress looks so sexy and expensive. (I guess that’s the point.) I love the velvet detail. BUT THEN, when she came out for their Olympic free dance, it was even better! I was so impressed that she managed to improve on her already perfect dress. The two dresses are very similar in style, entirely the same in cut, but the sequins and firey detail were just what was needed to notch up the theatricality just that little bit more. And I think I prefer it without the tie. So, way to go, Tessa. Top marks. Perfect 10s. 6.0. A+. Brava!
Sidenote: I LOVE when Tessa and Scott tango. I actually had to cut down the tango dresses in the list because it was maybe a bit much and all a little similar but I think we should all just take a moment to appreciate the Virtue/Moir tango and some of the dresses that didn’t make the cut. (Now I’m questioning myself!)
I find it interesting that Assassin’s Tango (centre) and Tango Roxanne are really bookends for their career and the dresses for these tangos are quite similar – long sleeves, high neck, open back, cut out side, diagonal cut skirt. Everything has come full circle.